Democracy Report: Democracy has declined and autocracy strengthened during the pandemic

Poland, Hungary and Slovenia blackened the state of democracy in Europe. Serbia is no longer called a democracy.

With democracy is doing poorly in the world, says Idea, the international democracy institute headquartered in Stockholm. The organization has published a report on the state of democracy in the world based on data from more than 150 countries since 1975.

The latest, released the night before Monday report according to the authoritarian states of the world have increased the persecution of their citizens during the pandemic so that 2020 is considered the worst in the history of the organization’s research in these countries.

Overall, however, the situation is not so miserable, as the number of authoritarian countries has fallen significantly. According to a 1975 report, nearly 61 percent of the world’s people lived in an authoritarian state. Now the percentage is only 35.

At least equally alarming are the report’s perpetrators of the decline of democracies in an increasingly rare direction.

According to the report, the number of declining democracies in the world has doubled in ten years. Now such countries are home to a quarter of the world’s population.

“The political mistakes and social weaknesses highlighted by the pandemic are driving the people in the direction of populist and authoritarian leaders, and they often do not provide lasting solutions to citizens’ concerns, ”says Idea Secretary General Kevin Casas-Zamora in the organisation’s bulletin.

“If there is one conclusion to be drawn from the report, it is that democracies must be bold and resourceful and re-create themselves.”

From EU countries declining democracies include Poland, Hungary and Slovenia.

In Poland, the threat to the independence of the judiciary is considered to be the worst. In Hungary, experts are concerned about freedom of expression: taking the media under government control is likely to affect the outcome of the next election, according to the report.

In the report now published, Slovenia is among the declining democracies for the first time.

“The crumbling of civil liberties and the lack of transparency in government action in Slovenia warn that the country’s political leadership has embarked on an increasingly authoritarian path.”

In the Balkans, the situation is considered the worst in Serbia, which has moved from a democratic state to an “hybrid state” classified between authoritarian governments and democracies in the statistics of Idea’s rapporteurs. Serious shortcomings in Serbia’s 2020 parliamentary elections are considered crucial.

From time immemorial in continental European countries classified as non-democracies in Russia, Belarus, Azerbaijan and Turkey, progress has been significantly worse, the report says.

China, India and Brazil have also gone in the wrong direction, the report sums up. The development of democracy in the United States is also showing worrying signs.

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